Mark Slack: Volvo XC60 – Scandinavian cool

Volvo XC60. Image - Volvo

MY Brother has a Volvo 850 estate dating back to 1995, yet despite its venerable age and a not inconsiderable mileage it still has a reassuring solidity in the way it drives, the way the doors close, the way the switchgear operates.

Drive Volvo’s latest XC60 and the similarities of reassuring solidity are still present today, the XC60 has a premium feel that has both Scandinavian cool and premium build quality. A mid‐size SUV the XC60 comes with an impressive array of standard features, even at entry‐level, and is a largely petrol engine line‐up with either mild‐hybrid or plug‐in hybrid. All-wheel-drive dominates the line-up with a single 2.0‐litre turbocharged petrol in a range of power options.

Prices start from €55,709/£47,460 and my test model, a 250hp mild‐hybrid Ultimate version, costs €56,360/£48,010. Thanks to a huge sliding panoramic glass roof, heated rear seats, steering wheel and windscreen plus an uprated sound system and four‐zone climate control that price climbs to €61,914/ £52,745. It makes for an impressive machine that offers both performance and economy, not to mention enough space to stretch your legs over long distances in comfort.

Choose a lighter interior and the XC60 just oozes premium ambience, even in darker hues it still shouts class. It’s a very cleanly designed interior but even with lots of touch screen action, it’s still a relatively intuitive cabin. The annoyance, if I’m honest, is the built‐in Google, or maybe I’m just too old! Any system that requires you to say ‘Hey Google’ is a step too far, and I found the system too hit and miss with voice commands. That’s something I haven’t found in other cars and from the normally sensible and reliable Volvo somewhat of a surprise.

It’s about the only irritant in an otherwise superb piece of automotive engineering. On the road, it comes as no surprise that the XC60 drives as well as it looks. Despite its not inconsiderable size, it handles remarkably well, and the refinement is superb. Its design is such that even without the parking aids you can pretty much see every corner, so parking is far from difficult. With lots of cabin space, even the luggage area is generous, not always a given on SUVs.

Volvo has become a cool and desirable brand that’s rightly viewed alongside premium competitors, not least from German manufacturers. If you want something different, premium, and rather cool, then Volvo and its XC60 could well be the SUV to grace your driveway.

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Written by

Laura Kemp

Originally from UK, Laura is based in Axarquia and is a writer for the Euro Weekly News covering news and features. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at [email protected]


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